Memorial on Friday for WWII veteran ‘Chet’ Neiswender, 1925-2014

December 15, 2014 at 8:55 pm | In Obituaries, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | No Comments

A memorial service is planned Friday morning for Chester “Chet” Neiswender, whose family shares this remembrance:

Chester E. Neiswender, 1/29/1925-11/25/2014

Chester (Chet) E. Neiswender passed quietly November 25, 2014. He leaves his loving family: Wife, Mary; stepchildren: Nancy McCreery, Rick Gay, Janine Cox; 8 wonderful grandchildren; and 5 beautiful great grandchildren. Chet is also survived by 3 sisters: Evelyn, Ester and Marji, who all had numerous children. Chet had 8 biological children, 11 biological grandchildren, and several biological great grandchildren.

Chet was a WWII veteran, driving big trucks like amphibious vehicles where he helped get soldiers onto the beach from the landing crafts at Okinawa, Japan, and the Philippine Islands. He was still in touch with a friend in Connecticut, the last surviving war buddy. We will all miss the wonderful stories from those exciting ,and sometimes horrifying, times.

Born in Hobart, WA, Chet was a lifelong resident of King County. He was a veritable wealth of historical information.

Click to read the rest of Memorial on Friday for WWII veteran ‘Chet’ Neiswender, 1925-2014…

Remembering Bjorg Orlob, 1943-2014, who ‘died happy among loved ones’

December 14, 2014 at 7:55 pm | In Obituaries, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 5 Comments

Family and friends gathered this weekend to remember Bjorg Orlob, who died last week at age 71. Here’s the remembrance looking back at her life:

Bjorg Olea Orlob passed away on 12/5/2014. Born Bjorg Solheim in Andoya, Norway, in the midst of the Nazi occupation on 9/26/1943, she emigrated to the USA at an early age. She grew up learning both American and Norwegian cultures and values, and embodied the best of both. She attended school in Bothell, and graduated Bothell HS in 1961. She already began collecting friends she would keep for life before she got her dream gift – a one-way ticket to Oslo – for her high-school graduation.

Once in Norway, she continued to make friends. She spent time working in Belgium as well as Oslo, and always took the time to love the places she visited and the people who inhabited them. Her travels took her many places, including much of Europe and parts of Africa.

Once she returned to the USA, she was introduced to the cousin of a high-school friend, and quickly fell in love with Carl Orlob, a US Naval Aviator.

Click to read the rest of Remembering Bjorg Orlob, 1943-2014, who ‘died happy among loved ones’…

Congratulations! Chief Sealth IHS teacher Noah Zeichner chosen as finalist for international prize

December 8, 2014 at 2:02 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 5 Comments

Chief Sealth International High School social-studies teacher Noah Zeichner has been announced as one of 50 finalists for a $1 million international award, the Global Teacher Prize. As pointed out in the Seattle Times (WSB partner) report on the announcement, Zeichner was honored by the Seattle-based World Affairs Council last March as Global Educator of the Year. One of his best-known projects at Sealth is World Water Week, which he co-founded with a then-student. From the 50 finalists, a Top 10 list will be announced in February, and the winner in March. You can see the full list of finalists from around the world by going here.

West Seattle scene: Cheering for the Hawks, with expert guest

December 7, 2014 at 4:19 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people, WS & Sports | No Comments

Go, Hawks! The photo and report on a one-of-a-kind viewing party happening right now are from Southwest Seattle Historical Society executive director Clay Eals:

Enjoying the ‘Hawks at Alki Fatburger with expert commentary from NFL coach Ken Flajole and supporting the Southwest Seattle Historical Society — what could be more fun on a Seattle Sunday? Flajole (lower left), former 16-year assistant coach of four NFL teams including the Seattle Seahawks, joined Eric Bell (to Flajole’s left) and seven of Eric’s buddies to take in the ‘Hawks/Philadelphia Eagles game this afternoon at Alki Fatburger, which donated the lunch at the SWSHS 2014 Champagne Gala Brunch. Others in the group (counter-clockwise from Eric) were Ricardo Cruz, Scott McClellan, Alex Shearer, Robert Ponselle, Lindsey Smith (Alki Fatburger manager), Christopher Goethe, Liz Day (the volunteer who put this Gala package together), Charles Smith, and Robin Warma.

More info here; here’s our coverage of the SWSHS gala on November 8th.

Remembering Mary Annie Belle Taylor, 1919-2014

December 4, 2014 at 9:00 am | In Obituaries, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 10 Comments

From Texas to West Seattle over the span of 95 years, Mary Annie Belle Taylor lived a good life, as shared by her family in this remembrance:

Mary Annie Belle Taylor
May 17, 1919 – December 3, 2014

Mary Annie Belle Taylor was born on her family’s ranch in Brookshire, TX on May 17, 1919. The youngest of six siblings, she loved ranch life, especially riding horses. She began documenting her family in photographs with a Brownie camera she received for her fourth birthday. Her collection of photographs documenting three generations of the Hughes family is part of the Smithsonian Institution’s collection of Americana.

Ms. Taylor moved to Los Angeles, CA in the 1950s and married the love of her life, Morris Taylor. She was among the first African Americans to attend culinary school, and became a chef and nutritionist in the 1960s. She managed a hospital kitchen until she retired in the late 1970s. Though childless herself, she served as favorite aunt to many nieces and nephews as well as neighborhood children, many of whom learned to cook in her kitchen.

Post-retirement, she moved to Silver Spring, MD, to be closer to family. A believer in action over words, Ms. Taylor worked with her local church to start a food program for elderly people living in her senior retirement community. Well into her late 80s, she used her beautiful tenor voice to telephone her “old folks,” read to them from the Bible, and sing to them.

In 2005 Ms. Taylor moved to West Seattle. Though health kept her from being an active member, she joined First AME Church in Seattle. In her final years, she was cared for by the wonderful staff at Providence ElderPlace to whom the family extends deep gratitude for their kindness, gentleness, and respect.

Ms. Taylor died peacefully the morning of Wednesday, December 3, 2014 after a long illness. Predeceased by her husband and all of her siblings, she is survived by loving nieces, nephews, and extended family throughout the country.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

Congratulations, Miles! 9-year-old runs Seattle Half-Marathon

December 1, 2014 at 1:20 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people, WS & Sports | 6 Comments

When 9-year-old Miles Trius returns to school at Our Lady of Guadalupe after Thanksgiving break, he has something big to talk about: His second half-marathon. The Seattle Marathon half-marathon on Sunday was the second half-marathon Miles has run with his dad, Navy Chief Ernesto Trius, who says they have run together for the past year and a half. Miles “looks forward to a marathon in his future when he is able to compete (age 12).” He runs cross-country/track for OLG in CYO Athletics. According to the Seattle Marathon online results, Miles finished in 2:17:39.

Celebration of life Sunday for Kerrie Yeasting, 1970-2014

November 28, 2014 at 6:22 pm | In Obituaries, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 3 Comments

A memorial service/celebration of life is planned this Sunday for Kerrie Yeasting, 44. Here’s the remembrance that’s being shared:

Kerrie Manolovitz Yeasting of Seattle died Thursday, November 20, 2014.

Kerrie was born on June 20, 1970 in Kodiak, Alaska. She loved the outdoors and exploring and photographing nature. Kerrie moved to West Seattle as a teenager and graduated from Seattle Lutheran High School. She went on to start a family in West Seattle, where she was active in co-op preschool and Alki Elementary PTA leadership for her boys Owen and Vic. She worked in business administration and human resources, and briefly owned the children’s store Chickadees in the West Seattle Junction. She recently moved from Seattle to North Bend, and spent the last couple months traveling through the Southwestern United States with her partner Scott.

Kerrie is survived by her two sons Owen and Victor Yeasting, mother Suzanne Carney, father Ken Manolovitz, brother Quint Manolovitz, sisters Annissa Manolovitz and Joi Bommarito-Lee, grandmother Phyllis Frederickson, partner Scott Robertson, ex-husband John Yeasting, and all of their extended families and the larger community of friends who will forever miss her and the indelible mark she left on many lives.

Services will be held at 2 pm, Sunday, November 30, 2014, at The Hall at Fauntleroy, and will include a celebration of life reception.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

Thanksgiving Day extra: West Seattle reasons for thankfulness

November 27, 2014 at 10:58 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 6 Comments

(EDITOR’S NOTE: As we wrap up this day devoted to thankfulness, we bring you this story by West Seattle writer Lori Hinton – author of West Seattle 101, with highlights featured here on WSB – looking at some of your neighbors and their reasons for thanks. This was first published on the West Seattle Junction Association website.)

(Will Valentine with Squish the cat)

By Lori Hinton
Special to West Seattle Blog

On a bright, crisp fall day, stroll the streets of The Junction and you’ll find West Seattlelites are eager to share their sunny dispositions. Ask them what they’re thankful for, and many will smile and tell you they are just happy to be here.

“I am thankful for the smell of the salt water in the air on the way in to work,“ beams Katie Barnhardt of Northwest Art & Frame.

Local bike rider Ed Lebel says, “I’m thankful that my dad was raised here so I was too.” Lebel loves to ride what he calls the “tour de West Seattle” around the beach.

“I am thankful for Lincoln Park and all the natural spaces in West Seattle,” smiles resident Maija Wade. “We have two kids and we love it here!”

But on top of being thankful for our amazing nature with beaches, parks, and recreational opportunities galore, West Seattle has something more: Heart.

Click to read the rest of Thanksgiving Day extra: West Seattle reasons for thankfulness…

Followup: ‘Lunches With Love’ volunteers feed hundreds

November 27, 2014 at 6:06 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 6 Comments

On Thanksgiving Eve, volunteers of all ages gathered to make sure hundreds on West Seattle’s streets would have something to eat. The photos are courtesy of Lashanna Williams, who told us on Monday about her family-friends-and-other-helpers tradition, Lunches With Love.

Lashanna reports, “Hundreds of people were helped. Over 900 sandwiches and over 500 sack lunches. A streetside Thanksgiving dinner with 2 turkeys, salad, rolls, pie and drinks were hand delivered to people around Seattle.” And she thanks everyone who helped, “in whichever way you did – everything matters.”

West Seattle giving: 8-year-old Joseph’s one-day food drive

November 24, 2014 at 11:56 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 20 Comments

The spirit of giving can start young. These pictures show what 8-year-old Joseph Meats, a third grader at Our Lady of Guadalupe, did this past weekend. His mom Christi Meats explains, “He wanted to do something nice for Thanksgiving and the up and coming holidays so he decided to go door to door and ask for food for the food bank!” So they distributed a flyer to some homes in Admiral and Arbor Heights last Thursday asking that people leave food donations on their doorstep for pickup yesterday.

Today, he brought it all to the West Seattle Food Bank after school.

His mom adds, “His goal is to inspire others so it was fun to watch him succeed in raising awareness as he left his wagon out during the Seahawk game and people kept dropping off food!” (And if you’re inspired – contact the WS Food Bank directly, or keep an eye on our daily calendar previews and Holiday Guide for giving opportunities of all kinds.)

Memorial tomorrow for Frank Henry Little, 1925-2014

November 24, 2014 at 9:09 am | In Obituaries, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 3 Comments

A memorial is planned tomorrow at Hope Lutheran Church for Frank H. Little, who died last week. His family shares this remembrance:

Frank Henry Little, 89, stepped into Heaven on November 20th, 2014.

He was born at home in West Seattle to Ed and Hattie Little. He married the love of his life, Lorraine, in 1948, and they were happily married for 66 years. Frank is survived by Lorraine, daughters Sharon (Bob) and Donna (Mark), and son Gordon (Debbie); 7 grandchildren – Chris, Jason, Brian, Curtis, Ryan, Matt, and Nicole; 14 great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, brothers Ed, Gerald, Bill, and sister Henrietta.

Frank was a master carpenter and gardner, loved to laugh and have fun, and dearly loved time with his family. Always willing to help out friends and family, he truly had a servant’s heart (With a smile). A celebration of his life and funeral service will be held Tuesday, Nov. 25th, at 10 am at Hope Lutheran Church, 4456 42nd Ave SW. Remembrances may be made to the Alzheimer Association.

I run toward the goal, so that I can win the prize of being called to Heaven. This is the prize that God offers because of what Christ Jesus has done – Phil 3:14

We love you and will see you in Heaven :)

(WSB publishes obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

Aaron’s Kids Swim Program launched with family’s gift to the Y

November 22, 2014 at 8:55 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 6 Comments

(YMCA photo: L-R, Raymond Mann, Kathryn Mann, Allison Wherry, Josh Sutton)
Thanks to the West Seattle YMCA (WSB sponsor) for sharing the news that the legacy of a favorite Y staffer will live on, as an endowment started by his family, who presented the launch donation this week (photo above). Here’s the announcement from the Y:

An endowment fund is being established in remembrance of Aaron William Mann. Aaron was an employee and volunteer of the West Seattle YMCA and previously worked at YMCAs in Anchorage and Colorado Springs. During his more than 20 years at the Y, Aaron was a lifeguard, swimming instructor and a teacher of thousands of kids, families and members. More than anything, Aaron enjoyed teaching and being around “his kids,” and had a special gift for turning their hard work into fun. Aaron taught them swimming and water safety skills, along with life skills. Aaron’s Kids Swim Program is intended to honor his memory and continue his loving support of Y kids.

Aaron’s parents, Kathryn and Raymond Mann, are establishing the endowment fund with an initial donation of $20,000. The purpose of the fund is to “Provide scholarships to kids and families for participation in the West Seattle YMCA aquatics programs.” Scholarships will be awarded to kids and families to offset the costs of swim lessons and aquatics activities. Funds may also be use to purchase aquatics equipment, particularly to meet the needs of kids’ swim programs.

The Mann family has also pledged to match the first $10,000 of incoming donations to the fund and to actively solicit continuing donations to the fund, with a first-year goal of a $50,000 endowment. Once established, the program will be managed andadministered by the West Seattle YMCA. All donations will be tax deductible in keeping with the YMCA’s non-profit status.

Thank you to the Mann family for their generous endowment and also for helping us keep Aaron’s spirit of service alive in all of us.

Aaron Mann was just 44 when he died this past June. Contact the Y for information about donating to the new program.

Memorial on Monday for Army, Air Force veteran Chad Hammond

November 22, 2014 at 5:08 pm | In Obituaries, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 9 Comments

44-year-old Chad Hammond will be remembered at a funeral with military honors on Monday. His family is sharing this remembrance:

Chad Preston Hammond was born in Gaffney, South Carolina on October 29, 1969. He passed away on October 22, 2014 at his home in West Seattle, just a few days shy of his 45th birthday.

Chad was a retired military veteran, having spent 5 years in the Army and 14 years in the Air Force Reserves. While in the Army, Chad was based out of Fort Lewis and also spent three years overseas in Panama. He worked out of McChord AFB for his Reserve duty. He was activated several times during his time in the Reserves, including time spent supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. Chad also held civilian jobs during his time in the Reserves and after his retirement.

Throughout the years, he worked a medical assistant, heavy equipment operator, and a semi-truck driver. Chad loved to do thrilling, adrenaline-pumping activities such as sky-diving, scuba diving, cliff jumping, and dirt bike & motorcycle riding. He also loved sports, and when his sons were younger, he volunteered as an umpire for West Seattle Little League Baseball. Chad was very much loved by his family and friends and is greatly missed. He is survived by his three sons Tyler, Bryce, and Jacob Hammond of West Seattle, his parents Robert and Linda Hammond of Dayton, TX, and his brothers, Kyle Hammond of Flagstaff, Arizona and Justin Hammond of Crawfordville, Florida. There will be a military funeral for Chad on Monday, November 24th at 11:00 AM at Tahoma National Cemetery in Kent, where he will also be laid to rest.

(WSB publishes obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

Carrie Akre returns to West Seattle, explores world beyond music

November 19, 2014 at 7:19 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 19 Comments

(Photo courtesy Carrie Akre)
By Keri DeTore
Reporting for West Seattle Blog

Many of Seattle’s talented icons call West Seattle home, from photographer Art Wolfe to Pearl Jam‘s Eddie Vedder. Now another icon has returned to our fold: singer/songwriter Carrie Akre.

If you don’t quite recognize her name, you probably know of the Seattle-based bands she led: Hammerbox, Goodness, or the Rockfords, and you would definitely recognize her voice; soulful and bluesy, but clear as a sunny winter’s day on Puget Sound.

After a break from the music scene and from the West Coast, Carrie returned to West Seattle this year. We sat down with her at the Admiral Bird to discuss the past few years, and what the future holds, professionally, musically, and personally.

Besides writing, playing and singing in bands Akre wrote and produced solo albums including “Invitation” in 2002 and “…Last the Evening” in 2007, efforts that she says left her “burnt crispy” from exhaustion.

Click to read the rest of Carrie Akre returns to West Seattle, explores world beyond music…

Friday memorial for Don Knodel, 89, barber-shop owner and more

November 19, 2014 at 10:13 am | In Obituaries, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 7 Comments

This Friday afternoon at Forest Lawn, family and friends will gather to say goodbye to Don Knodel. Here’s the remembrance they’re sharing with the community:

In Loving Memory of Don Knodel

It is with great sadness that on 11/11/14 our father, grandfather, great grandfather, uncle, and friend, passed away. He was the anchor of the Knodel family and will be missed.

Donald Clayton Knodel was born in Chasely, ND and raised in Hurdsfield, ND. He was one of 8 children and lived there until he joined the Navy, where he served in World War II on the USS Howard W. Gilmore. He came home and married Audrey Jean Kelm, his wife of 64 years. Together they took a leap of faith and with their two young children moved from ND, to West Seattle where they lived out the rest of their lives.

Don owned and operated Don’s Barber Shop on California Ave. for 45 years. He was an avid sportsman his whole life, playing baseball and basketball in school, then in the men’s league in ND. Moving to WS he became a regular bowler at the W.S. Bowl, poker player, and was involved with W.S. Little League Baseball as a coach and umpire. He and Audrey were Totems hockey season ticket holders and original Seahawks season ticket holders. Fishing was his true passion with trips to Canada and up at Timberlakes. Don loved having family and friends around him, whether it was playing cards, dancing or just sitting around telling stories and laughing. Lots of laughing….

Preceded in death by his wife Audrey; 3 brothers – Durward, Al, Andy; 2 sisters – Doris and Joyce. He is survived by his children Dwight (Nik), Kath (Kelly), Pam (Tom); grandchildren Erin, Damon, Tyler, Ian, Kaley; 6 great-grandchildren; 2 sisters Opal, Irene; and countless friends and family who will miss, but never forget, him.

Service: 11/21/2014, 2 pm, Forest Lawn Funeral Home (6701 30th SW). Please join us in the celebration of his life at the Knodel residence following the service (4122 41st SW). If you wish, donations to the Alzheimer’s Foundation would be greatly appreciated.

(WSB publishes obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

Local student Carmen Gray in national cooking contest finals

November 15, 2014 at 7:11 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 8 Comments

Congratulations to Carmen Gray, who is the only Pacific Northwest contender in the final round of a kids’ cooking contest. She and 24 others are in the running for the Ben’s Beginners grand prize – $30,000 for their school cafeteria, and $15,000 for the winner. Carmen is a 4th grader at Fairmount Park Elementary; her family explains that the prize money for the school can be used at its discretion: “Some possible uses are: a learning garden, composting program, and/or healthy food related artwork for the bare walls. As you know, the school is new and while we have all the basics, it is pretty stark in the cafeteria.” The contest sponsors also will present “a hometown celebration with an appearance by NY Chef Marcus Samuelsson.” Carmen entered by making a video for her recipe “Brown Rice Bean Burger” (using the sponsor’s product) and now needs votes to win. You can see her video and vote (no strings attached – you don’t have to sign up for anything, register, or take social-media action) by going here daily until November 26th. Good luck, Carmen!

Followup: Senior Center of West Seattle’s board meets, one day after ‘stay or go?’ community-comment town halls

November 13, 2014 at 9:58 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 7 Comments

Following up on Tuesday’s “town hall” meetings (WSB coverage here) for community comment on whether the Senior Center of West Seattle should go independent or be absorbed into the citywide nonprofit Senior Services – we went to last night’s meeting of the SCWS board, which will ultimately make the choice. Toplines ahead:

Click to read the rest of Followup: Senior Center of West Seattle’s board meets, one day after ‘stay or go?’ community-comment town halls…

Remembering longtime West Seattleite Lori Hobby, 1957-2014

November 13, 2014 at 9:00 am | In Obituaries, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 5 Comments

Family and friends are remembering Lori Hobby, who died last week at age 57. Here’s the remembrance they wanted to share with the community:

Lori Lynn Hobby, a born-and-raised West Seattleite, was brought up by parents Ann and Jim Hughes, with siblings Dana, Jimmy, and Steve. She attended Jefferson Elementary, James Madison Middle school, and graduated from West Seattle High School as an Indian.

Married to Doug Hobby, together they raised three wonderful kids, Keith, Anna, and Tim. November 5th, 2014, the two-year battle with breast cancer and liver cancer ended in her beautiful home she made.

A private memorial for Lori will be held at Forest Lawn Cemetery on Saturday, November 15th. Anybody wishing to send flowers, please reconsider donating to your favorite charity instead.

(WSB publishes obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

2 ‘town halls’ on Senior Center of West Seattle’s future: As-it-happened coverage of #1, full video of #2

November 11, 2014 at 3:05 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 31 Comments

(MIDNIGHT UPDATE: Right after our as-it-happened coverage of meeting #1, we have added the full unedited video of meeting #2)


We’re at the Senior Center of West Seattle with about 100 people here to hear, and talk, about the center’s future. The issue first came to public light four months ago with the sudden ouster of the center’s longtime director Karen Sisson (as first reported here), who says she was fired over an e-mail (read it in this WSB report) expressing concern about the decision the center is reported to be facing – becoming a “program” of the citywide nonprofit Senior Services, or going independent. We’ll be reporting live as the meeting goes; there is a second session coming up at 5:30 pm for those who cannot be here this early.

Regarding the question “should we stay or should we go,” it’s just been stressed by independent facilitator Charlotte Stuart that “no decision will be made today.” She says they do not want those in attendance to speak about Sisson’s departure.

Her successor, interim center director Lyle Evans, is the first to make an opening statement. Second, board president David Robertson says the board has made a decision “to remain at this time under the current umbrella of Senior Services and to work with Senior Services to fulfill (its) mission … The Senior Center board of directors supports Lyle’s position as interim director” and will work with him.



Senior Services CEO Paula Houston (who fired Sisson) speaks next. “We are very excited that the board has voted to remain with us and to work through the process that we are going to be putting in place.” That would seem to suggest that the first-announced point of the meeting is moot – the question “should we stay or should we go?” – although it came just minutes after the facilitator said “no decision would be made today.” Houston then goes on to say “nothing has been decided … we are just at the beginning of our decision-making process.” We’ll do what we can to get this clarified after the meeting.

One attendee asks Houston to define Senior Services and the center’s relationship with it. “We are a nonprofit … the largest one serving seniors in King County … we also operate (programs such as) Meals on Wheels, caregivers … enhanced fitness. Our relationship to this center is that we operate it under a memorandum of agreement – although the center is its own 501(c)(3) with its own governing body, Senior Services employs the staff, (provides some) funding, and (handles support services) such as IT, payroll …”

3:22 PM: The first member of the audience asks for clarification of that very point. Robertson says “That is not a permanent decision, that is a decision that at this time we are going to stay under the umbrella of Senior Services. There is a task force (that will) study the Memorandum of Agreement … to help develop (a new one). At this time we are staying under that umbrella – I am stressing those words, ‘at this time’. We are looking at a good 12 to 18 months before they have even done their research talking to the various centers and their staff.” (Senior Services runs six centers in the region.)

Nancy Sorensen, a member of the West Seattle center’s board, stands to say she wrote the original contract, ~30 years ago, and offers more background: The center was incorporated in 1972, and bought the building – now owned free and clear – in 1986; the center also has about $200,000 in reserves, she says. She explains the board first voted to secede from Senior Services, then rescinded that decision and decided to gather more information, including talking with the community and looking at budget projections and “whether there is community support for independence or community support for being part of Senior Services.” She summarizes, “the board has decided to remain a part of Senior Services pending further study.”

Will another permanent director be hired? asks another attendee. That’s on hold while the future is determined, is the reply.

Next Q: You all know all about this memorandum – but we don’t – can we see it? Sorensen (photo above) explains that the contract included a statement that the center director could not be determined without consulting the board, and mentions Sisson’s firing (which was supposedly not to be mentioned) was done “in violation of that memorandum of agreement.” She says copies of the six-page memorandum “can be provided.”

Then Doug Garvey steps up and says, “if we choose to go with Senior Services instead of stay independent, what are you going to do for me?”


Houston steps up to reply, “We are going to ensure that this senior center remains a senior center in perpetuity. We know how important this center is to the community.” “How are you going to do that?” someone calls out from the crowd. Garvey steps back up to the mike and says, “We own this building … I gotta say, I don’t trust you. I think we can handle it on our own, that we can be independent … we got a good base here, we got a lot of hard work ahead of us, but we have a lot of great people here who can continue this, and I’m all for that.” Some applause ensues.

Facilitator Stuart next reads a question that was submitted in writing, asking for the advantages and disadvantages of staying with Senior Services. …

Click to read the rest of 2 ‘town halls’ on Senior Center of West Seattle’s future: As-it-happened coverage of #1, full video of #2…

Followup: Emily’s misdelivered wedding ring has been found!

November 10, 2014 at 4:54 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 23 Comments

On Saturday morning, we published Emily’s plea, trying to find out who might have the package containing her wedding ring, remade for her upcoming 10th anniversary, after its delivery … to the wrong address. No one knew WHICH wrong address. But Emily just sent this happy news:

MY RING HAS BEEN FOUND! The delivery driver went to every house on his route…at this house in particular, they saw the news story and didn’t even realize it was in their screen door. My faith in humanity has been restored :)

Thanks go out to everyone who helped look!

Next step toward Watton family’s pocket-park gift: Teardown

November 10, 2014 at 9:47 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle parks, West Seattle people | 21 Comments

This isn’t the only house being demolished in West Seattle today, but we’re pretty sure it’s the only one with a backstory like this: It’s the house at 3823 SW Willow in Gatewood that was mentioned here three months ago, as Seattle Parks notified neighbors about the plans to turn it into a pocket park, thanks to a “reserved life estate donation” from George Watton, who lived there with wife DeLayne Watton for more than half a century. He built the house after returning home from World War II and had arranged the donation of the site, plus money to cover demolition, long before his death last year at age 95 (his wife died in 2007). Parks has said that after the site is cleared – today’s teardown follows a long period of more-gentle “deconstruction” – they will embark on site restoration and turf establishment, to be complete by next spring.

P.S. Thanks to Joseph for sharing the photo!

ADDED: And thanks to Ron for this view hours later, as the final wall of the house was brought down:

Reader report: Words of gratitude for a West Seattle neighbor

November 10, 2014 at 9:09 am | In Delridge, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 10 Comments

A message like this might usually end up in the WSB Forums‘ Rant/Rave section, but it arrived in our inbox, and a Monday morning seemed like the time for some good news. From Kelly:

I just wanted to say THANK YOU to the woman who is currently raking leaves off the sidewalk (which is also the primary bike route in/out of our neighborhood) and the Delridge onramp to the bridge. That street flooded horribly earlier this week because of leaves in the storm grate and was dangerous. The water was almost over the sidewalk. My husband and I were driving by so I couldn’t thank her myself but I hope you’ll share my deep appreciation!

Shared!

West Seattle weekend scene: American Legion Post 160′s Veterans Day ‘thank you’ dinner

November 9, 2014 at 8:48 pm | In Triangle, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 1 Comment

The doors at American Legion Post 160 in The Triangle were open for three hours tonight for those who have served or are serving to come enjoy a free “thank you” dinner, as Veterans Day approaches. In our photo above are Post 160 Commander Keith Hughes and Linda Cox. Dinner was an Italian menu again this year:

Post 160 has one more invitation: Everyone who has served in the U.S. armed forces, or is serving now, is welcome to be a member. The post (3618 SW Alaska) has a general meeting every second Wednesday, 6 pm, which means the next one is coming up in just three days, on November 12th. Questions? E-mail wslegion160@gmail.com or call 206-932-9696.

Early Veterans Day gift: Volunteer project makes WWII vet’s home safer

November 8, 2014 at 9:06 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 5 Comments

Three days before Veterans Day, a West Seattle man who served in World War II got an early gift.

Rebuilding Together Seattle, with help from Renewal by Andersen, worked on the Beach Drive home of World War II veteran Elvino Naccarato. Along with fencing, the volunteers worked to build safer stairs and a porch.

They also worked to clean and organize the home, hauling away what they cleaned up as well as debris from work they did.

Kerianne Halpin, a spokesperson for the project, explained, “We want to help someone who helped us through their dedicated service. By making improvements to his home, we will make it safer and more comfortable for Elvino.”

P.S. RTS accepts applications from qualifying homeowners in need. It welcomes volunteers, too.

Heard of TED Talks? Coming to West Seattle – FRED Talks!

November 7, 2014 at 11:03 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 2 Comments

Want to be inspired and informed? Check out a great slate of speakers without crossing the bridge. Just announced by Kol HaNeshamah, their first “FRED Talk”:

Listen to what Harborview Medical Center Medical Director, J. Richard Goss M.D., has to say about Ebola, Obamacare and other hot topics which impact our community Sunday, Nov. 23, from 3-5 PM at Alki UCC/Kol HaNeshamah, 6115 SW Hinds, as part of West Seattle’s first FRED Talk.

If you are familiar with Ted Talks, you will understand FRED Talks. FRED, which stands for Fresh, Relevant, Educational & Dynamic Talks are a way for community members to come together to hear from those who are on the front lines working hard in our community each day.

“We see one another at the grocery store, ride busses together, attend our children’s’ games or performances and say hello,” says Kol HaNeshamah Rabbi Zari Weiss, “but we seldom take time to really learn about the challenges and the joys we face on a daily basis at work. FRED Talks are designed to give us the opportunity to hear more from one another about why we do what we do each day.”

Other speakers, November 23, include Scott Schill, producer of Frank vs. God, a full-length feature comedy currently making a splash at film festivals around the country, Danielle Eidenberg-Noppe, education ombudsman at the Washington State Office of Education, and Alice Braverman, the development director at Navos Mental Health Solutions.

FRED Talk speakers will share stories of gumption, grit and gratitude and allow time for questions. Attendees will hear from all four speakers with a short intermission along the way. Suggested admission is $18 for adults and $12 for seniors and students. Children’s activities will be available, ages 3-11, for $5 a session.

“We are excited to invite community members from West Seattle and beyond to join us for this interesting and engaging afternoon,” Weiss says.

Proceeds from this event will go toward KHN, West Seattle’s progressive synagogue community.

West Seattle Veterans Day 2014: ‘Thank you’ dinner invitation

November 6, 2014 at 10:08 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 1 Comment

Serving? Have served? You’re invited! From Kyle Geraghty:

American Legion Post 160 of West Seattle and American Legion Auxiliary Unit 160 would like to invite all active duty, reservists, members of the national guard, veterans and their families to our annual Veterans Day Italian Dinner. It will be held on Sunday November 9th from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM. This is American Legion Post 160′s thank you to all veterans in our community who have served our country. The menu includes: pasta, homemade sauce, garlic bread, salad, dessert, coffee and tea. The cost is absolutely free.

Here’s the official flyer with more information.

Early lesson about giving: Admiral Co-op Preschool 4-year-olds’ West Seattle Food Bank adventure

November 3, 2014 at 6:53 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 3 Comments

The earlier, the better, to teach the youngest members of our community about giving and volunteering. In that spirit, the Admiral Cooperative Preschool 4-year-olds embarked on quite a field trip today. Karrie Riemer shares the photos: First, they went to West Seattle Thriftway (WSB sponsor) to collect nonperishable-food donations for the WS Food Bank. Then they walked to WSFB – about half a mile uphill!

Once there, they presented their collection: 74 cans/boxes of food and $136! But their work wasn’t over yet – they sorted the donations.

Then it was time for a tour.

P.S. WS Food Bank has a big event next Saturday – a turkey drive in the HomeStreet Bank (WSB sponsor) parking lot at 41st/Alaska, 11 am-2 pm – bring a 10-to-12-pound turkey or $15 cash.

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